HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) — A Penn State Harrisburg freshman is quickly working her way up in the sustainable fashion community. One of her dresses made out of masks and newspapers is now on display at the Art Association of Harrisburg.
Sustainable fashion is becoming increasingly trendy. For Carley Furlow, it involves making clothes out of things that would otherwise be thrown away.
Her dress being featured at the art association is for the gallery exhibit “Figuratively Speaking,” where every piece of art includes a mask.
“I just knew I wanted to include newspaper articles in there because it tells a bunch of different stories and it’s not just one person’s perspective on what’s happening,” said Furlow.
The 19-year-old first got involved in sustainable fashion when the coronavirus shut the world down.
She’s high risk and had to stay in, so with her extra time, she made as many masks as she could for frontline and essential workers.
Furlow has been sewing since she was a kid, and wanted to continue making clothes.
Since she decided it was more important to dedicate her fabric stash to masks, she started using whatever she could find around her house for those clothes.
Furlow tries to make everything wearable, but also uses her pieces to get people thinking.
The Central Dauphin East alum is studying business administration.
“My goal is to have a business related to something-sewing, even if it’s some type of store.” said Furlow. “I love to do alterations and my favorite thing is to teach people how to sew, and it’s a dying art, so trying to keep that tradition of sewing going because a lot of times, when something gets a whole in it or we’re just done wearing it, we get rid of it.”
Furlow wants to play a part in changing that cycle.
Another one of her dresses, which is baked leaves fused together with maple syrup, made her a finalist in an upcycling/zero waste contest.
If she wins, she gets a spot at Sustainable Fashion Week in New York City.
Furlow also placed second place at the last in-person Farm Show fashion show.
The newspaper and masks dress will be on display at the Art Association of Harrisburg until May.
Below are more of Furlow’s sustainable fashion pieces: